Monday, November 7, 2011

UPDATE: Thank you for your Service, Now get outta the way!

On April 25, 2012, with the Governor's signature, Georgia joined in the interstate compact on education opportunity for military children. Thank you, ...

• Governor Deal has been successful in stymieing the passage of SB 219 - Interstate Compact on Education Opportunity for Military Children. What this bill does is allow military children who transfer into a Georgia schools due to their parents being reassigned to a military installation in the state to progress to the next grade and/or graduate whether or not they have completed Georgia specific courses. Thirty nine (39) states have passed the law – why won’t Gov Deal? We all need to write to the Governor expressing our displeasure with his position and encourage him to support the bill.

...but, while the signing of the tax bill helps corporations, for retirees, not so much. (see )
• HB 1055 - Georgia Taxpayer Relief Act of 2010. Among other things, it established the exemption of retired pay from state income tax. The exemption is incrementally enacted. HB 387 - Revenue and Taxation; Revenue Structure; Comprehensive Revision seeks to repeal the law - Georgia Taxpayer Relief Act of 2010 - plus has other fairly significant tax code changes. I would strongly encourage all to contact their State Representative and State Senator and express their opinion concerning these tax changes. The current exemption is $35,000 and goes to $65,000 on January 1, 2012

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Next Greatest Generation

I am convinced that the next Greatest Generation may well be today's youth.
As substantiating information for this view, I just got back from the ΣΦΕ Exec and Chapter meetings in Athens (UGA). My SigEps took top honors at homecoming as the best frat and Brother Davis Webb was the homecoming king. I am so proud to be the Chapter Counselor for these 125 fantastics young men, ages 17 to 21. Like me, they have a "D" after their name (Δ) which could stand for "Different" like mine. They are indeed a different type of fraternity that disavows pledging and paddling and pranking. To them, alcohol consumption and sexual prowess are not the role nor the goal of their brotherhood. They craft a staged approach to developing a Balanced Man. They go through four stages of growth from knowing thyself, to knowing your brothers, to knowing the community, to knowing their life role and mentoring others.
Their 3.41 grade point average points to their heads, and their top dollars raised in Philantrophy points to their hearts. But in their prayer to close the meeting tonight in which they asked only for others points to their good soul.

For District 25 contestants, at my request, they prayed that the best man win the election on Tuesday November 8th.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Why I WAS A Democrat

I was asked, after a public Q&A tonight of six Republican candidates for the Georgia House, and me, the only Democrat, "Why are you a Democrat? Your answers were just as Conservative as the [six] Republicans?"
Here is my answer.
Before I entered the military, I was a Democrat of the Carl Sanders era. I was even a 1964 charter member of his Youth Council. During my 23 years of military service, I was apolitical. I didn’t particularly lean to one party or the other. After all, I was a commissioned officer. When I retired from the military I began a new career in education. When I settled in Georgia, Zell Miller was Governor and I had to love what he did, or tried to do, for education, especially the HOPE scholarship. Now, I did vote for Sonny Perdue twice because he was a fellow graduate from high school in Warner Robins, Georgia. In fact, our last two High School reunions were held at the Governor's Mansion. But, in 2010, having become disenchanted with the intrigue reported by our local newspapers within our County Government, I decided it was time I offered my services. That meant, practically, due to the stringent requirements to get on a ballot as an Independent, I had to run as either a Democrat or Republican - decision time. Well, I could read the tea leaves as well as anyone else in 2010. So, I first explored the Republican Party in Hall County. I discovered that I had to swear an oath to the party and found that to be inconsistent with my oath as a commissioned officer (although retired, I retain my commission). In addition, when I contacted the party leadership, they were cold to my running as three people were already competing for the Republican nomination. (Quite frankly, I was also a good bit irritated by the fact that they used, and at last check still use, an obviously purposefully mutilated plastic American flag as the background of their Web site). Well, being a math teacher, I decided I needed to make a mathematical decision. So, I took the party platforms from both the Democratic and Republican Parties at the time, listed each sentence one at a time, discarded all the "fluff" sentences that did not state a position, then, one by one, checked off the remaining sentences with which I agreed. When I finished, I found that I had checked off 54% of the Republican sentences and 58% of the Democratic sentences. You see, they are both relative close in the belief in America and the strength of the American people. So, I was clearly, and mathematically, a Democrat by 4%. I was told by a Professor of Political Science at the University of Georgia that this just meant I was like most people in the United States. I can't think of a better honor than that, can you? So, that, and the fact that the Hall County Democratic Party freely accepted me, knowing my conservative fiscal beliefs, clinched the deal. Thus, I ran as a Democrat.